A TASTE OF LEISURE

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One of the South African’s favourite resorts, imposing and impressive, the elegent five-star Sugar Beach unfurls along the sun-
drenched, sheltered bay of Flic-en-Flac, bordered by crystalline waters, manicured gardens and one of the most picturesque
beaches on the island.

Unveiling the Seychelles: A Birdwatcher’s Paradise with Endemic Species

The Seychelles archipelago, a sprinkling of islands scattered across the turquoise canvas of the Indian Ocean, is a magnet for beach lovers and sun worshippers. But beneath the swaying palm trees and the dazzling white sands lies a hidden treasure trove waiting for exploration by a different kind of enthusiast – the birdwatcher.

The Seychelles offer a symphony for the ears, a chorus performed by a dazzling cast of feathered residents. From the prehistoric-looking Seychelles Scops-owl with its piercing yellow eyes to the vibrant plumage of the Paradise Flycatcher, these islands are a haven for birdlife, boasting a remarkable number of endemic species found nowhere else on Earth.

Birdwatching in the Seychelles is a relaxed affair, a chance to ditch the rigid itinerary and soak in the sights and sounds. Picture yourself strolling along a nature trail fringed with lush vegetation, the air thick with the scent of frangipani and the salty tang of the ocean. A flash of iridescent blue catches your eye – a Seychelles Blue Pigeon, endemic to the granitic islands, alights on a nearby branch, its feathers shimmering in the dappled sunlight.

The thrill of spotting an endemic bird species is so special. The Seychelles Warbler, a tiny ball of fluff with a bright yellow breast, flits through the undergrowth, its sweet song echoing through the trees. The Seychelles Magpie-Robin, a dapper fellow in black and white, struts along the forest floor, its long tail feathers trailing behind like a gentleman’s coattails.

Head to the wilder islands like Silhouette or Praslin and you might encounter the echoic squawk of the rare Seychelles Sheathbill, a critically endangered bird with a distinctive curved beak adapted for extracting nectar from flowers. A visit to Bird Island, a nature reserve named for its feathered inhabitants, offers the chance to witness thousands of Sooty Terns nesting on the sandy shores, their synchronized movements creating a mesmerizing spectacle.

Birdwatching in the Seychelles isn’t only about ticking species off a list. It’s about connecting with the islands’ unique ecosystem, appreciating the intricate web of life that thrives in this tropical paradise. With a little patience and a keen eye, you might spot the Seychelles Kestrel, a small falcon with a fierce hunting prowess, or the Seychelles Paradise Whydah, a male with a long tail feather used to woo potential mates.

The laid-back pace of island life allows you to soak yourself in the experience. There’s no pressure to rush from one birding hotspot to the next. Instead, take your time, wander along the nature trails, and let the sights and sounds unfold around you. Pack a picnic lunch, find a secluded spot overlooking the ocean, and simply observe the symphony of nature playing out before you.

The best time for birdwatching in the Seychelles is during the cooler, drier months between May and September. During this period, the birds are more active, and the skies are clear, giving better viewing. However, the islands are a year-round birding destination, with each season offering unique sightings.

So, if you’re planning a trip to this idyllic Indian Ocean island destination, pack your binoculars alongside your swimsuit. The Seychelles await, not just with their picture-perfect beaches, but also with a vibrant tapestry of birdlife waiting to be discovered by the curious and patient observer. Let the symphony of the Seychelles serenade you, and embark on an epic birding adventure.

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